A brain-to-brain interface (BTBI) enabled a real-time transfer of behaviorally meaningful sensorimotor information between the brains of two rats. In this BTBI, an “encoder” rat performed sensorimotor tasks that required it to select from two choices of tactile or visual stimuli. While the encoder rat performed the task, samples of its cortical activity were transmitted to matching cortical areas of a “decoder” rat using intracortical microstimulation (ICMS). The decoder rat learned to make similar behavioral selections, guided solely by the information provided by the encoder rat's brain. These results demonstrated that a complex system was formed by coupling the animals' brains, suggesting that BTBIs can enable dyads or networks of animal's brains to exchange, process, and store information and, hence, serve as the basis for studies of novel types of social interaction and for biological computing devices.
A Brain-to-Brain Interface for Real-Time Sharing of Sensorimotor Information
Miguel Pais-Vieira, Mikhail Lebedev, Carolina Kunicki, Jing Wang & Miguel A. L. Nicolelis
Scientific Reports 3, Article number: 1319 http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep01319